Discrepancy between Expectations and Experiences after Prostate Cancer Treatment: A Dutch Multicenter Study.

To evaluate possible discrepancies between patients' expectations concerning sexual side effects related to prostate cancer (PCa) treatment, based on the obtained information prior to treatment. Moreover, to determine if demographic or clinical factors may have an effect on the accuracy of patients' expectations concerning sexual side effects after treatment.

A multicenter, cross-sectional survey was performed among men treated with prostatectomy, brachytherapy, external-beam radiotherapy and/or hormonal therapy.

In total, 412 questionnaires were analyzed. Of men with sexual side effects after treatment, one in three (32.5%, n=109) reported their complaints as worse than expected; significantly more often reported by men treated surgically (p=0.001), men with a local stage tumor (p=0.005) and by men with a lower prostate-specific antigen (PSA) level at diagnosis (p=0.046). It was significantly less often reported by men treated with radiotherapy combined with hormonal therapy (p=0.031). Men who used brochures as an information source reported their sexual side effects significantly less often as worse than expected (p<0.001).

One in three men with sexual side effects after PCa treatment, experienced their complaints as worse than expected based on the obtained information prior to treatment. Men treated with radiotherapy combined with hormonal therapy indicated less discrepancy between expectations and developed sexual side effects, whereas prostatectomy, low stage tumor and low PSA level were associated with more discrepancy. Brochures should be administered additionally to verbal information to improve patients' understanding of possible sexual side effects and to enhance the accuracy of patients' expectations.

Urology. 2019 Sep 05 [Epub ahead of print]

Lorena A Grondhuis Palacios, Paul van Zanten, Marjolein E M den Ouden, Esmée M Krouwel, Jack J H Beck, Yacov Reisman, Hein Putter, Rob C M Pelger, Henk W Elzevier, Brenda L den Oudsten

Department of Urology, Leiden University Medical Center, PO Box 9600, 2300 WB, Leiden, The Netherlands. Electronic address: ., Department of Urology, Leiden University Medical Center, PO Box 9600, 2300 WB, Leiden, The Netherlands., Research Center of Nursing, Saxion University of Applied Sciences, PO Box 70000, 7500 KB, Enschede, The Netherlands., Department of Urology, Sint Antonius Hospital, PO Box 2500, 3430 EM, Nieuwegein, The Netherlands., Department of Urology, Amstelland Ziekenhuis, PO Box 328, 1180 AH, Amstelveen, The Netherlands., Department of Medical Statistics, Leiden University Medical Center, PO Box 9600, 2300 WB, Leiden, The Netherlands., Department of Urology, Leiden University Medical Center, PO Box 9600, 2300 WB, Leiden, The Netherlands; Department of Medical Decision Making, Leiden University Medical Center, PO Box 9600, 2300 WB, Leiden, The Netherlands., Department of Medical and Clinical Psychology, Tilburg University, PO Box 90153, 5000 LE, Tilburg, The Netherlands.